SHORTLISTED FOR THE LA TIMES BOOK PRIZE
For fans of Where the Crawdads Sing and On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous, a richly atmospheric debut about lost innocence and rural America...
'Remarkable. This novel reads like a miracle' NPR
'Brimming with longing, with heartbreak' New York Times
Jude is popular, beautiful, wealthier than most in Deep Valley. Cindy is Jude's neighbour - younger, poorer, a kid from the kind of family everyone knows will come to no good. Jude is black and Cindy is white.
One summer, Jude disappears. Search parties go out but come back empty-handed and strangely pleased. Jude thought she was better than everyone else. Look at her now. Meanwhile Cindy is performing a vanishing act of her own. She is slipping out of her old life and into someone else's. She is becoming Jude...
'Lyrical, sexy, humane, and just a total pleasure to read' Elif Batuman, author of The Idiot
'One of the most exquisitely written books I've read in a long time. A haunting novel about craving escape so badly you're willing to erase yourself, by a writer I would follow anywhere' Julie Buntin, author of Marlena
'Remarkable. Fiction debuts this accomplished don't come along very often . . . Smith is a writer of immense talent and rare imagination [and] this novel reads like a miracle'
Strange and powerful . . . It's a book brimming with longing, with heartbreak. It's a coming-of-age by coming into somebody else
Audacious... Smith's beautiful, poetic prose transforms this strange coming-of-age story into something wondrous
Rich and vivid, [a] hauntingly gorgeous debut novel... Smith captures this unstable world with matter-of-fact poetry, spare and sensual and surprisingly funny
One of the most unforgettable books I've read this year, offering a uniquely haunting, but also disarmingly funny and lyrical look at loss, love and the desire to be seen
This is a mysterious and strangely exciting debut. Smith is a poet, and writes in sensory driven, soul-tapping prose.
Enthralling, startling and stunning... The prose leaves you raw, defying you to articulate what the book is because it feels too immense, promising no easy answers
Feral, alert and hungry, an unsettling coming-of-age story. Her words create a picture of desperation and absence and a poignant story of accountability
An eerie exploration of desperation and the complexities of maternal love... Sure to be a page-turner
A stunningly evocative debut novel